Back with an 11 track record, Lorde brings her unique talents to the forefront of this album which is sure to leave yet another lasting impression on the music industry. The Royals singer (with an incredible South Park rendition) has such a great reputation for putting out really well made and thought provoking music, always standing out from other artists at the time. ‘Melodrama’ is her second album that was released on June 16th, and the following are my thoughts after hearing the album for the first time!
An interesting start, very raw with just her vocals and piano. Absolutely love the production work on her voice, and it (as you might expect) builds more as the song progresses. Green Light seems to be a song about looking reminiscing over a past love, unable to let go. ‘I wish I could get my things and just let go’. She has such a talent for memorable choruses!
Almost Bjork-esque start, Sober feels a lot more relaxed than the previous track. ‘What will we do when we’re sober’ does sound like an anthem for the party goers out there, while at the same time giving you a different spin on what you might expect. I love the dynamics in her voice on this one, quieting to a whisper when she needs to add some extra punch.
The most ‘pop’ entry so far, Lorde always finds a way to add new things to tracks, be they the smallest change in a verse part or a different bit of production work. Meticulous attention to detail, no matter the song. The ‘Now you know it’s really gonna blow’ part is a perfect example of that; many in the same genre would just think ‘chorus ad nauseam’, but not Lorde.
First with an acoustic guitar leading the way, this features some pretty nice lyrical work and more of the Lorde solid production value. It’s simple, but cutting everything out but vocals on any track always gets my attention! The new section at 3 minutes in takes you aback, serving as a long outro for the song. Continues the general vibe of the album, which is great; this was clearly put together as one whole unit.
‘I’m a liability, get you wild make you leave, I’m a little much for everyone’. All of the emotions on this one. Her voice suits a stripped back piano track as well, who knew! It’s a really tight song, with her feelings at the forefront. My favourite so far, I am a big fan of the stripped back songs like this.
This one feels like the main song in a heart wrenching drama movie, right when the director decides to punch you in the throat with some incredible twist. The longest track on the album, it also has a lot of really cool working parts, but the strongest part of the track is Lorde’s vocals, weaving an emotionally drenched narrative. Sudden unexpected change at the 4 minute mark (Loveless?) is very different to the first half, but has a great almost vengeful spirit to the lyrics. There will be a whole load of memes of that one.
Sober II (Melodrama);
Callback to the earlier song and potential lead album song, this is another solid track, featuring a cool piano intro and ‘that’ electronic drum sound you may be more than a little familiar with. More great lyric choices too! ‘Oh how fast the evening passes cleaning out the champagne glasses’ feels like a poignant way of revisiting what happens once you sober up.
Writer In The Dark;
Piano and vocals again, very happy to hear it. It serves her voice so well. ‘Bet you rue the day you kissed a writer in the dark’. This feels like another look at a love gone wrong, with some of the nicest vocal work so far on the album. Really strong melodies here too.
Probably the clearest reminiscing track so far (the lyrics tell you as much), this is a really forward-driven track, and feels like a single to me. The imagery of her creating a ‘supercut’ of all the best moments of a relationship in her head is great, I can already see some kind of artsy video for it. Going back to vocals and piano for a very brief interlude is a great brief change of pace, with ‘in my head I do everything right’ giving a further look into a potential relationship gone awry.
A welcome and unexpected return, bringing this back makes much more sense after the hard hitting emotions from the tracks in between. More electronic work for this version, ‘You’re not what you thought you were’ points to either the person in the song realising their self worth and proving they aren’t a liability, or is a message to the other participant in the relationship. It gets you thinking; always a sign of great lyrics!
The piano and vocal unison part made me so happy, and I am not really sure why. Perfect Places is a great choice to close the album, which feels like another very strong candidate for a single. Are the ‘Perfect Places’ somewhere to escape to, or escape from? It features even more very strong production work, and ends with Lorde addressing my question; ‘What the fuck are perfect places, anyway?’.
If you want to read Lorde’s own words on every track on the album, click here.